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Messages - geegee

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General Discussion / Re: What kind of bike should I get
« on: June 11, 2009, 11:29:12 pm »
Splurge and get the Salsa Fargo. I'm lusting for that bike! Ride it on the road with slicks, then when you get to the off-road part of your tour, switch back to knobbies

Gear Talk / Sizing a 29er for off-road touring
« on: June 09, 2009, 09:28:06 am »
I'm thinking of getting a 29er mountain bike to add to my growing stable of bikes. There's a great network of ungroomed rail trails out where I am and I'd like to tour more of the Trans Canada Trail in the future which is mostly off-road and unpaved.

A question to those who tour on 29ers: did you size it as a mountain bike fit (upright riding) or get a slightly larger so you're a bit more stretched out?

I'm looking at a Gary Fisher Ferrous 29. Seems like an awesome steel framed bike perfect for my intentions. I am also thinking of getting an Extrawheel trailer to use with it.

Underground Railroad / Re: Niagara Falls to Ontario Route
« on: June 04, 2009, 01:17:20 am »
Check out the Waterfront Trail's website. They have detailed maps of each section from Niagara to Toronto and beyond into the St Lawrence Seaway.

The only map where the Kettle Valley trail would "show up" is the Canada Topo map, and it will only be indicated as an abandoned railway, meaning you won't be able to do any routing functions and it will only serve to show you where you are (no ETA calculations, etc.)

Gear Talk / Re: Tough Touring Tire
« on: May 28, 2009, 11:59:16 pm »
I currently have Vittoria Randonneur Hyper kevlar tires on my touring bike and they are the toughest tires I've owned. I rode it up to Alaska from Vancouver last summer and did not have a single flat despite the long stretches of unpaved roads (especially on the Top-of-the-World Hwy). I rode the same pair from Orlando to Houston a few months ago, switching the back and front to even out the wear. I did have one flat on that ride, during a rainy day when particles seem to penetrate small fissures in the rubber. Despite all that riding the whisker-like things on the sidewalls are still intact. The only issue I have with them is they fit really tight on the rims and I've broken several plastic tire levers taking them off and I've had to get metal levers.

Routes / Re: Syracuse NY to Pittsburgh PA?
« on: May 26, 2009, 11:41:14 am »
I'm in Ottawa ON and I usually enter the States at Ogdensburg NY via the bridge or Cape Vincent NY via the ferry from Wolfe island. Getting to Syracuse from both points is pretty straightforward.

I suppose I could follow the ACA route to the Lake Erie shore and the question remains what the best route to get to Pittsburgh from there?

Routes / Syracuse NY to Pittsburgh PA?
« on: May 24, 2009, 11:31:33 am »
Anyone have some good advice on roads to take from Syracuse to Pittsburgh? I'd like to do the GAP and C&O sometime and I'm looking for a good route to get there from Canada. I've cycled to Syracuse before, but not farther southwest.

GPS Discussion / Re: Garmin software for Mac OS X: Experience?
« on: May 23, 2009, 12:02:10 pm »
I got my new MacBook and installed the Garmin Software in it and it definitely works better on the new intel Macs. As a bonus, the two-finger scrolling function on the multi-touch trackpad works from any tool, making switching to the hand tool for panning obsolete. The pinch gesture, however does not work for scaling in and out, but I hope they incorporate it in a future version which will then make the magnify tool redundant.

By the way just to mention to Mac users who are not aware, that older maps need to be converted to Mac format on a Windows PC. It's a one time pain, but could be difficult for someone who does not have access to a PC. Details on how to do this are documented here

Also, Garmin has released BaseCamp for Mac which makes use of the 3-D features of the newer topo maps along with altitude data from your GPS unit.

General Discussion / Re: Menus for bicycle trip
« on: May 14, 2009, 11:28:51 pm »
Since you have a support vehicle, I don't think you have to worry much about the menu. It really becomes more of an issue for self-supported tours when carrying weight and equipment play a big role. With a group like that, you'll probably need to prepare a good quantity of food at a time, so pick foods that are not fussy to prepare, like Mac and cheese, spaghetti, or chili, or pack a barbecue grill/griddle for burgers and pancakes.

GPS Discussion / Re: Garmin software for Mac OS X: Experience?
« on: May 14, 2009, 11:05:24 pm »
I've been using Garmin's RoadTrip (and Bobcat before that) for a while that I've almost forgotten how it is to use MapSource. I't not the snappiest software -- I'm still running it on a PowerMac G5, but that may change when I get my new MacBook Pro next week.

I have some issues with the "smart" folders becoming locked when I want to edit routes, and the program keeps on making duplicate copies when I make changes or add additional routes.

Compared to other Mac software, I find the tool set up a bit crude. I wish they would make use of the shift and command keys, so that you could toggle to the hand and the zoom functions from the other tools.

Other than those points, the program is not bad and hasn't crashed on me since it went out of beta stage.

Gear Talk / Re: NuVinci hub
« on: May 08, 2009, 07:22:02 pm »
I didn't think the NuVinci hubs were that much more than Alfine, $100 more at most. Curiously, there is a Cadillac-branded NuVinci Bike that is much cheaper.

One thought I had was a NuVinci Hub coupled with a Gates Carbon Drive could make for a really sweet commuter bike especially in the cold snowy winter.

Gear Talk / NuVinci hub
« on: May 08, 2009, 02:49:45 pm »
Anyone try out a NuVinci hub yet? I'm interested in one but not for touring, just for commuting. There seemed to be glowing reviews of it a couple of years ago from some websites, but I haven't really seen any recent reviews especially from real consumers.

Gear Talk / Re: Bike Jersey vs. Under Armour
« on: May 06, 2009, 08:10:23 pm »
I really like using rash guards when I ride. I have a few of them because I do quite a bit of kayaking as well. Because they are made for water sports, I find they dry much quicker than bike jerseys, and feel much more comfortable when you're sweaty. My faves are from

I like UnderArmour, too. I never used the pockets in my bike jerseys so I don't miss them.

Routes / Re: Pacific Coast or Calgary to Denver through the Rockies?
« on: April 26, 2009, 10:15:47 pm »
Three months is a good amount of time and offers a lot of possibilities. If I were you, I would consider flying to Edmonton. From there you could cycle to Jasper, then ride down the spectacular Icefields Parkway towards Banff. Skip Calgary and do the KVR from Castlegar to get to Vancouver then do the Pacific coast. It is possible to do this route from Edmonton to San Francisco in about two months, so you'll have time to stretch it out in a more relaxed pace. If you've made good time and do it under two months, you could head up the Western Express Route towards Colorado, and if you are running short in the end, head for the nearest Amtrak station to hightail it to Denver.

Gear Talk / Re: Cycling Sandals
« on: April 21, 2009, 11:35:03 pm »
Waterproof means that the sandal materials can actually take being wet. My first Lake sandals had quite a bit of leather on the straps which took longer to dry and deteriorated over time.

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